MIAMI, FLA.- PULSE
returns to its oceanside home at Indian Beach Park on Thursday, December 6th with its signature Private Preview Brunch from 10am to 1pm featuring performances by Lafleur & Bogaert and Jessica Yatrofsky with the NY Fem Factory and serving drinks provided by Ketel One, Don Julio, and Miraval. The preview will be followed by Young Collectors Cocktails from 5pm to 7pm, presented by Spain is Part of You, featuring an interactive live painting by PROJECTS artist Antonyo Marest. Running through Sunday, December 9th, PULSE Miami Beach continues with its focused curation of group exhibitions in the North Tent plus SOLO booths, CONVERSATIONS booths of dual-artist presentations, and POINTS booths dedicated to non-profits and alternative models in the South Tent.
The 14th edition of PULSE Miami Beach marks the second year of directorship by Katelijne De Backer, whose guidance has brought a vibrant audience of art collectors, curators, and enthusiasts to over 70 galleries, including exhibitors from Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, Scotland, South Africa, Switzerland and Ukraine among others, and introduced 26 first-time exhibitors at the fair. From site-specific installations, new video art, cutting-edge painting and photography to multi-media works, this years PULSE Miami Beach aims to showcase the breadth of artistic production happening across the globe.
Included in PULSE this year is a fresh group of digital work comprising PLAY, a collection of independent installations making up PROJECTS, and new PERSPECTIVES partnership with the David Lynch Foundation in discussion with PULSE artist Miya Ando and others on Meditating, Art and the Creative Process. Additionally, PULSE will continue its steadfast fair feature PRIZE, a tradition since 2006 where a jury-awarded cash grant is presented directly to an artist of distinction chosen from a SOLO presentation at the fair. This years PULSE PRIZE will be juried by a group of emerging and established authorities in the industry, including Jen Inacio, Curator at Perez Art Museum Miami; Leilani Lynch, Curator at Bass Museum of Art; Zoe Lukov, Curator at Faena Art; Cristina Favretto, Head of Special Collections at University of Miami; Rosa Lowinger, Independent Curator; Kimberly Drew, Writer and Independent Curator; and Vere Van Gool, Associate Director of IdeasCity at New Museum.
This year, PULSE presents a series of unique collaborations with artists and leading brands: Knot Expected: Elevating the Everyday by Windy Chien and presented by Sunbrella aims to elevate the functional practice of knotting to create a universal language of beauty, bringing into the present an art-form of the past by placing knots in new and unexpected contexts; Separately, Origin: Fictions of Belonging by Adrienne Elise Tarver and presented by Califia Farms brings into question the origin of accepted histories using an overly saturated mesh draping of palm leaves to show the physicality of invisible boundaries. Finally, PULSE is excited to showcase this years PROJECTS Special Commission featuring Moonlit Clouds by Miya Ando and presented by Vince, a site-specific work that invites meditation and interaction with visitors, activating the PULSE tent to create an experiential entry into the art fair.
Furthering the conversation of previously accepted histories, artist Bisa Butler (Claire Oliver Gallery) highlights unsettling conditions of her own African American community by contrasting a decorative aesthetic in textile work with politically aware messaging to instigate conversations that question the status quo; and Gina Adams (Accola Griefen Gallery), a descendant of both indigenous Ojibwe and colonial Americans, uses her cross-media practice to restructure large scale antique quilts of words from broken treaties, to draw on cultural practices of forced assimilation gallerists Kristen Accola and Kat Griefen feel that PULSE will be "an excellent platform for important contemporary American and Native American women artists; and likewise, Alicia Smiths video for PULSE PLAY is a re-appropriation of her personal history to address immigrant violence and anti-indigenous rhetoric within the United States, by channeling the voice of a pre-Columbian woman telling the story of a Purepecha warrior princess Erendira, showing two Escaramuza riders traveling around the frame holding a red rebozo, acting as two shifting yet ever-connected points on a map.
Assessment of Trauma
Speaking directly to the recent socio-political moment will PROJECTS Artist Ann Lewiss sobering installation of womens and girl's underwear mixed with beer, dirt, glass, blood, tears, grass, twine, wood, and metal for One in Five of Us, illuminating the horrifying fact that 20% of American women will be raped in their lifetimes in a largely abstract yet public space; along the same theme of A Violence for this years PLAY, Maggie Hazens video installation Call of the Lily conjures and deconstructs hyper-real cinematic and video gaming tropes with a mythological female icon stepping in to disarm and question how we relate to normalized violence, the role of gender in popular media, and the blurring of the boundary that separates screen from reality; in honor of those lost to acts of terror, Joseph Guay (Hathaway) is showing a politically charged exhibition of paintings made from motor oil, shattered high-rise glass and gunpowder with sculptures created from live round ammunition and handguns revealing the hidden truths of consumer protection and fear; and Aristotle Roufanis (Momentum Fine Art) is showing a decade long body of work that explores the contemporary urban phenomena of social alienation with large format images in an absence of light, he selectively illuminates individual narratives that give the viewer a private and yet familiar glimpse into solitary existence.
Images of Escapism
Replicating the image of herself in search of identity, Naomi Okubo (Gallery Momo) places her likeness within various colorful environments to examine the image-consuming culture of today, layering images from various media; also sourcing material from the internet and personal photos, Armando Marino (Coates & Scarry) paints visions of a tranquil paradise that are constructed composites of a place and people embedded in our contemporary culture, seeing accounts in the news of souls in search of a new life; Charlotte Keates (Arusha Gallery) creates dream-like scenes of 1960s and 70s-inspired houses, lush plants and placid swimming pools in her collection of 50 vivid paintings depicted loosely on a set of Kodak slides documenting an American family holiday, echoing the aesthetic of vintage Florida the artist comments on how it feels entirely appropriate and really exciting to be able to show this collection of works in the exact place where they were first inspired. The act almost becomes a journey in itself, a sense of returning or coming home.
Distorted Perceptions in Memory
Looking at the place where fictional and real space merge, Lucy Smallbone (Fiumano Clase) paints distorted landscapes that reveal how stories affect and alter our view of a place, imbuing a feeling in moments of the sublime in nature; Conversation works by Todd Lanam & Alexis Anne Mackenzie (Mark Wolfe Contemporary) pursue a common fascination with the cognitive process of memory formation and recall, through multi-layered paint or collage respectively, the artists look at the constant shifting, omission, and recreation of visual memories within the broader context of consciousness, dream and reality; Joeggu Hossmann (Python Gallery) deals with globalization by presenting motifs of collected, compressed impressions from everyday life, reflected and frozen with an intensity of glowing, muted colors that pixelate and blur boundaries; Starsky Brines (Galerie Heike Strelow) captivates audiences with his distinctive style that focuses on characters built from a combination of anthropomorphic and zoomorphic features that bend reality, oscillating between figuration and abstraction; Christian Rex van Minnen (Gallery Poulsen) paints hyper-real mashups of guts and candy with a result thats disturbingly pleasing on the eyes.
Value of Humor and Surrealist Ideas
Presenting an installation that contorts and conflates personal snapshots of commercial and infrastructural scraps to play on the way we perceive abjection, Louis Granet (Neumann Wolfson Art) paints with such scale and sheer prismatic range that viewers are challenged to explore the radical possibilities of finding charm and humor in places most easily overlooked; Magali Hébert-Huot & Curtis Miller (Hamiltonian) join together in a dual-artist booth featuring work that overlap on the use of tongue-in-cheek decoys, playful colors, and layering material to offer work that is both recognizable and relatable yet not what it seems; Ukrainian artist Zhanna Kadyrova (Voloshyn Gallery) poses as a saleswoman in a market performance selling a selection of goods by weight typical of a street vendor, yet the watermelons, zucchinis, eggplants, eggs, hams and sausages are all art objects made of heavyweight construction materials like ceramic tiles, cement, and concrete stone.